Microsoft today announced several new deals and alliances for increasing its presence in the education segment. The enterprise IT vendor said Microsoft technology is used in 98 percent of schools worldwide.
The new announcements were made at its annual Microsoft in Education Global Forum.
“Privacy concerns are holding educators back from making the most of modern technology and preparing students to succeed in today’s workplace. At the same time, many solutions being used in the classroom are unintentionally putting student data at risk,” said Anthony Salcito, vice president, Worldwide Education, Microsoft.
Microsoft offerings for education
Microsoft Office 365 Education is currently used by 110 million students, faculty and staff. This cloud service guarantees that student data will never be mined for advertising.
Student Advantage, available for free through qualifying institutions, includes the Office suite and more than 4 million students are already getting Office 365 Professional Plus from their schools since it was launched in December 2013.
Bing for Schools ensures students don’t see search ads when using Bing and also enhances their privacy by preventing the use of data to create ad profiles.
Windows Intune cloud service allows school IT administrators to manage Windows, Windows Phone, Android and iOS devices connected to their network over the Web, eliminating the need to own each device or to use onsite servers.
Microsoft offers resources to train teachers on new technology, including the Partners in Learning Network that reaches nearly 1 million educators and includes online professional development, how-to tutorials, and learning activities created by teachers for teachers.
Microsoft IT Academy provides technology skills to more than 8.5 million teachers and students in 130 countries. In addition, Microsoft has helped educators incorporate technology into the classroom to enhance the learning experience for their students through programs such as Teaching With Technology.
Pearson and Microsoft will create new applications and advance a digital education model. As part of the IT deal, Pearson’s Common Core system of courses will use Windows 8 touchscreen environment.
Interactive education technology company Promethean World will develop Windows 8 apps and Office 365 integration for its platform ClassFlow, a cloud-based, classroom tool that enables teachers to create lesson plans, connect and deliver interactive content across multiple devices, and assess student understanding.
BrainPOP has released its third Windows 8 app, BrainPOP ESL, an English language learning program that uses engaging animated movies to model conversational English.
Wolfram|Alpha will deliver 22 Windows 8 apps for tablets, including the Wolfram|Alpha App, 16 Course Assistant Apps, and 5 Reference Apps.
Knewton and Microsoft will promote adaptive learning and support Microsoft’s partner and publisher ecosystem in personalizing content for students.
A partnership with CK-12 Foundation supports the development of Windows 8 apps to provide students and teachers with access to a library of K–12 STEM content at no cost.